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2023-06-14 19:21:35

Building a Better PlayStation Classic Console

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Greetings .

And today , let's talk about the Playstation Classic or rather my reaction to it because I was seriously looking forward to this thing .

But after seeing the final result , I'm giving it a hard pass and I slapped together an L G R station .

Instead it plays all the P S one games I want and cost less than 100 bucks .

And we're going to make one today using a raspberry pie in the help of a few handy websites .

All right , let's dive into the L G R station classic or whatever you want to call it .

I know this isn't revolutionary or anything and I'm certainly no bin heck when it comes to building stuff .

But I still think this thing is pretty darn useful .

If you're only here for the build section , you can skip to this point in the video .

But otherwise , first a little back story because man , the E P S one is easily one of my favorite systems of all time .

So a miniaturized version emulating 20 games had my attention .

But what Sony came up with in the Playstation Classic , confounds me .

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No .

Crash Bandicoot Tomb Raider or even Grant Terrio no analog controller option for the games that support it and a rather lackluster selection of emulator tweaks compared to the competition .

Then I saw the lukewarm preview coverage of the playstation Classic in November 2018 .

My disappointment was palpable .

Just the more I hear about this thing , the worse it looks , especially since I already had an alternative .

I put together one weekend back in June of 2017 .

So I posted this tweet to gauge interest in the video and well , your reaction was pretty clear .

So here we are with the L G R station Classic .

It's a Raspberry Pi three model B in a 3d printed case running the retro pie front end and that's it .

Nothing fancy or exotic .

And I'm well aware , this kind of solution is not news to many of you , but for those of you that have never done so before or are simply curious what parts I chose .

The rest of this video is for you .

The first item is of course a raspberry pie which is really just a tiny system on a chip with some handy integrated interfaces .

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And for this , I went with a Raspberry Pi three model B .

There are plenty of pie models out there and some new ones have come along since I first put this together .

But the three model B is more than capable of running P S one games and only costs 35 bucks .

However , it tends to have some challenges with heat distribution , especially if you put it inside of the case .

So I added these two straight fin aluminum heat sinks from Love Our Pie , which was sold as a set for a dollar 99 back when I bought them and they come with some nice thermal transfer adhesive and just stick on there dropping temperatures by a good 25% according to my own testing .

Seriously , do not skip the heat sinks if you're planning on running P S one games as I ran into a bunch of performance throttling without these installed .

And the other thing I added was an official 2.5 amp power supply again due to performance throttling issues when emulating playstation games .

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The P three is capable of using any micro USB power supply , but I kept running into errors when using third party ones constantly getting under voltage warnings with USB phone chargers and generic 2.5 AMP USB power supplies .

Next up is the micro S D card which I had lying around from a previous project .

But a 64 gig card like this can currently be had for about 15 bucks .

I've only ever used these ultra plus E H S one cards with my Pi three , but it seems more than quick enough to efficiently load and run PS one games and 64 gigs is enough space to fit a good 100 to 150 games or So depending on your selected games , of course , then there's the case , which is a notable step down in quality from the official classic .

I'll admit this is a design by Philippe Campos that I had printed and shipped to me since I don't own a 3D printer .

And altogether that came to about $20 .

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And while it looks rough on close inspection with whoever printed it , applying this shoddy paint job , I think it looks halfway ok at a distance , sitting under my TV .

And the design appealed to me more than most other 3d printed P S one cases I was seeing online at the time .

It doesn't have any moving parts led lights or functional anything .

Really , it's simply a shell so the pie itself can cosplay as a tiny playstation and it really is tiny tinier than the official P S one classic and even smaller than the Nintendo Classic systems with that screwed together .

It's now ready to plug into a display which is done using either composite or H D M I for me , H D M I was the priority since I wanted to use this on a four K TV .

But this optional cable is fun to have as an option to easily plug it into AC RT for that warm and fuzzy composite video aesthetic .

And while prices are sure to fluctuate , here's what everything ended up costing me .

And this does assume that you already have controller to use a topic we'll address in a moment .

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There are links to all this stuff in the video description for your convenience and to be clear , I am not affiliated with any of these sites or services they just worked out for me .

Finally , there's the software side of things which is thankfully all free Raspberry pies don't come with their own os but getting one on there is straightforward .

Thanks to the excellent Retro Pie project which combines things like Raben emulation station and retro arch into one pre configured pa .

In fact , one of the playstation emulators it comes with is P CS X rearmed , which just so happens to be the same emulator that Sony chose to run the official playstation classic .

Anyway , download the appropriate premade image to your computer of choice plug in your micro S D card and run either win 32 disc imager , Apple Pie Baker or etcher .

Depending on your os .

This will write the entire retro pie set up onto the card pretty much ready to go .

And once that's done , insert card into the pie , power it on and behold expanding file systems and configuration options .

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The first order of business is setting up an input device and while it defaults to an Xbox controller , you can customize the pie three to work with nearly anything so long as it uses us B or Bluetooth , I went with a P S four controller since it feels great for P S one games and can compare with the pie using Bluetooth .

No problem .

You may have to plug in a wired device at first though , since the Bluetooth pairing options are some out of the way .

But once you've got it paired , it should stay that way unless you decide to pair the controller to A P S four .

Again , after this head into the retro pie , set up menu and enable wifi , well , unless you're connecting via Ethernet , of course , but Wi Fi is nice and lazy and I approve once you're connected , it's a good idea to run the package up update to make sure you've got the latest versions of everything or maybe add more emulators if you want anything beyond the default configuration .

But by default , the playstation emulators are already installed with that .

Out of the way , it's time to play some games .

You'll need two things , a bios file and some disk images .

The bios is the Playstation firmware .

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And while there's a version of pcs X with its own emulated bios , the most compatible version requires an original .

And unless you back it up yourself , you'll have to find one from sites like the internet archive .

Same goes for disk images or ISOS as they're commonly known , even though pcs X can handle 10 different extensions beyond just O files .

Once you've got some , though getting them onto the system is super simple , you can either copy them directly onto the micro S D card or you can use your home network to transfer them over wifi .

I prefer the ladder myself due to laziness .

And also because on Windows it's as simple as typing backslash backslash retro pi into the address bar of Windows Explorer bam .

Everything you need is accessible .

No swapping of memory cards whatsoever .

Now it's time to enjoy your games .

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Oh , yeah .

321 go .

Ah , this is what we've been after all this time , isn't it ?

Awesome ?

Wow .

Awesome .

Assuming that you're happy with the default emulation options , there are a pile of options to explore in P CS X alone .

Plenty of sound and visual tweaks that are worth exploring .

I typically try to get things looking as clean and crisp as possible while not changing the look of the games too much .

So that means keeping the original four by three aspect ratio , upscaling and integers to maintain pixel shape and disabling things like scan line filters , bilinear smoothing and resolution doubling .

Some might prefer that stuff .

But I just don't about the only visual tweak I've applied is the one to remove dithering .

And that's only for certain games where I prefer cleaner textures .

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But for the most part , I'm just happy having another way to get my P S one gaming fixed when I feel like it and being able to swap between my entire collection of games without leaving my couch is wonderful .

And I don't feel as if I'm missing out on much compared to the official playstation classic .

Either considering this is using the same base emulation software underneath 3D printed case is a whole lot uglier that's for sure .

And it's not nearly as easy to use as the real thing , but I can play whatever I want from my collection and also use analog controllers with the games that support it or even those that don't by enabling a tweak in the options menu .

And of course , being that this is running retro pie , you can emulate dozens of systems in addition to the playstation , as well as customize it to your heart's content with things like custom user interfaces and graphics shader to make things look however you like .

So yeah , that's my L G R station classic build , simple stuff , but highly versatile to the point where I've kept it plugged into my TV for about a year and a half now .

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And I don't see that changing anytime soon .

The hardware is more than up to the task and the software is only getting better .

So I'm happy with it .

And do let me know in the comments if you've put together something like this , yourself using a Raspberry Pi already or if you now plan to after seeing this video and of course , if you like this kind of thing , then do check out the rest of L G R I make new stuff every week and all sorts of tech .

And as always Thank you very much for watching .


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